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Hepatitis B: Treatment to Prevent Perinatal Transmission


Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology:
doi: 10.1097/GRF.0b013e318251097a
Prevention of Infection in the Obstetric Patient

Hepatitis B remains a significant health issue and a leading cause of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma worldwide. Transmission of the hepatitis B virus, despite the availability of the vaccine, still occurs, particularly in the perinatal setting. Studies have shown that mothers with active viremia especially those with very high viral levels (>108 copies/mL or >107 IU/mL) are at increased risk of hepatitis B virus transmission, even with appropriate immunoprophylaxis at birth. With the development of new and relatively safe oral antiviral therapies, assessment with the mother about the risks and benefits of antiviral therapy should be discussed in those with highest transmission risk.

Author Information

Liver Transplant, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California, and Geffen UCLA School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California

The author is a consultant/speaking Bristol Myers Squibb, Gilead Sciences Research Bristol Myers Squibb.

Correspondence: Tram T. Tran, MD, Liver Transplant, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA. E-mail:

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.